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Virginia - United States

Our American Players’ Favorite Curacao eGaming - With Ratings! Updated January 2021

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9.5 / 10
Available in:United States
  • Excellent range of customer support options
  • Very generous welcome bonus
  • Excellent ongoing promotions
  • Great selection of progressive jackpots
  • User-friendly mobile site
8.5 / 10
Available in:United States
  • 800+ top casino games
  • Nice welcome bonus
  • Plenty of promotions
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Works well on mobile
8 / 10
Available in:United States
  • Can deposit with Bitcoin
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Bonuses for new and existing players
  • An easy to use mobile site
  • Good selection of “other” games
Not accepting players from:Virginia - United States
9.7 / 10
  • Play with bitcoin or traditional currencies
  • More than 2900 casino games
  • Support through live chat, email and social media
  • Free no deposit bonus when you sign up
  • Licensed by Curacao eGaming
Not accepting players from:Virginia - United States
  • Lots of great games
  • Excellent live casino
  • Bitcoin accepted
  • 24-hour support
  • Mobile web design

Table of contents

The application process for a license

Applying for a permit in Curaçao is slightly different from most other jurisdictions. Instead of a gambling license, you have to apply for a so-called IP license for eGaming on Curaçao. IP stands for Information Provider. Within the scope of this license, you can also offer online games of chance.

One can apply in different ways for this license. The most notable is through the Curaçao eGaming website, which is very similar to an official government website, but apparently not official at all. Because the official government agency Curaçao Internet Gaming Association (or CIGA for short) does not have its own website. Some sources say that Curaçao eGaming is an official CIGA licensing company, but there is no reference to this on the website. The main competitor, Gaming Curaçao, also speaks against this. 

Both websites offer the official IP license and declare strict requirements for applicants to be eligible for such a license. Curaçao eGaming has also developed a seal of approval and offers a blacklist that can be used to identify the reputable casinos while the bad apples are filtered out. 

The application for a license itself takes place in clear steps and takes about two to four weeks. According to the website of Curaçao eGaming, there is strict monitoring that a casino meets all requirements. The costs of the license can vary but the application fee is usually around $40,000 on average.  

Curaçao eGaming license terms

The official government agency CIGA does not have a website as previously mentioned. It has been repeatedly criticized for this by the Dutch government and various media outlets in recent years. But it still moves in the background and, for that reason, it’s unclear what exact role the agency plays. According to Curaçao eGaming, their core tasks are consultation, online gambling licenses, and monitoring. What this means in concrete terms is not further outlined. 

Together with the licenses, Curaçao eGaming also offers various business solutions for online casinos. This includes, for example, servers, data storage, administrative support, and payment methods. This conflict of interest can at least be described as conspicuous for a government agency. Furthermore, online casinos that are registered on Curaçao often have a different seal of approval with the Curaçao coat of arms. After all, Curaçao eGaming is not transparent at all for players. 

Player Protection

While there is a lot of talk about strict conditions, these conditions are nowhere to be found.

So, it seems that the protection of players is in the hands of a company that has filled the void left by the government through poor organization. In many ways, Curaçao eGaming resembles well-maintained websites from licensing authorities à la Malta and the UK. They keep an eye on the casinos and seem to handle complaints from players.

However, this neat first appearance has many catches. Curaçao eGaming's earnings model aims to assist the casinos in setting up the casino. Therefore, when you file a complaint about a casino, Curaçao eGaming must take action against its own customers. For that reason, a player can not rely on the regulator to step in as a mediator in the case of a dispute with the casino. Furthermore, there are no mandatory tools for responsible gaming. In many Curaçao online casinos, you won’t be able to find any options to set up spending limits or self-exclusion.

  • A gambling license is intended to protect players, and one of its main functions is to provide a mechanism for resolving disputes when they come up. If you have a dispute with a casino, and the casino is being unreasonable, the gambling authority will help you. For many licenses, this means you can contact the gambling authority to get help processing your withdrawals, claiming money the casino has debited from your account, or resolving other disputes that might arise. The likelihood that the gambling authority will help you in ways that are effective, however, depends on the procedures they have in place for this. This is yet another reason why choosing to play at a casino that has a safe license is important.

    Getting help directly from the gambling authority is not always necessary, or even an option. A lot of regulators have now enforced third-party dispute resolution. This means casinos must have an agreement with an arbitrator who will look into disputes on the behalf of players from a particular casino. This ensures your dispute will be reviewed by an objective third party. All trusted online casinos have information about arbitration on their websites if they use this option, or they’ll have the contact information for the gambling authority you should consult. However, you should always try to resolve your issues with the casino first, and a lot of casinos have separate email addresses specifically for handling complaints.

  • If you’re worried about the security of the transactions you’re making at a casino, you should look for a logo with the acronym PCI DSS. This stands for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, and this is something the payment industry has created. If you see this logo, it means the casino can be trusted for safe money transactions since they follow all of the rules set by the payment industry. Information about this can also be found in an FAQ section on the casino’s website.

    Another thing to look out for in terms of payments is where your money is kept while you play. Some gambling authorities, all of the best ones actually, regulate what the casino can do with your money while they are holding it. Your money shouldn’t go into a general bank account held by the casino; it should go into an account that is strictly for holding player funds. This means that as long as you have the money in your player account, it can’t be spent by the casino. Your deposit will be kept separate from the operating funds of the casino until your player account is empty, which will happen if you make a funds withdrawal or if you lose the money while playing.

  • The best known system tool for ensuring that a casino offers fair games is eCogra; however, there are other providers that also offer these kinds of systems. You want to make sure that the casino is using a certified third-party control system to ensure that the games of chance you’re playing are actually based on chance and not on other types of metrics. Rigged games are ones that have been set up to pay out less than they claim to or ones that give some players a greater chance of winning than others.

    The eCogra logo can often be found in the footer of the casino’s website, but not all casinos choose to display it. If you can’t see this logo, go to the FAQs and see if you can find information about random number generators. If there are no FAQs on the site, check out their terms and conditions or contact the casino’s support and ask how they ensure their games are safe.

  • An SSL-encrypted website should be mandatory for any casino, and very few casinos operate without this or similar safe encryption features. Always keep in mind that you are giving the casino quite a bit of sensitive information, including your payment details. When you’re uploading and sending documents to verify your identity, you want to make sure that no unauthorized third-party has access to them. Site security, therefore, doesn’t only include the website itself but also what the casino does on the backend. You should always look into a casino’s data security. You’ll normally find information about this in their terms and conditions and their privacy policy. If in doubt, contact their support and ask for more detailed information.

    Most trustworthy casinos have information about site security in the website footer, so simply scroll down and look for the logo of a well-known security system.

  • The gambling license a casino operates under will have a big impact on your security. Not all licenses are equally safe for players for the simple reason that they are issued by different gambling authorities that work in different ways and have different rules. The rules and regulations may be quite similar, but the way they are enforced is a different story entirely. For example, if a casino doesn’t comply with the regulations, some gambling authorities may just issue a fine while others may revoke the casino’s license outright. How often gambling authorities show up for an unscheduled inspection or control will also vary.

    The biggest differences between a safe, high quality gambling license and one that isn’t as good will usually show up in the areas of fair gaming, dispute resolution and the rules and systems for identifying and handling problem gamblers (responsible gambling). If your country of residence has its own gambling authority, playing at casinos that are licensed by them will be the safest option for you. Other international licenses that can be trusted are issued by the Malta Gambling Authority and the Gibraltar Regulatory Authority. Curacao eGaming is getting better at protecting players whereas licenses from Panama and Costa Rica, for instance, are considered less safe. The worst option is obviously a casino with no license whatsoever.

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